February 25, 2018  

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MCJ Hosts Annual Awards Banquet for Top Students

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The School of Mass Communication and Journalism at The University of Southern Mississippi recognized its top students at its annual awards banquet Wednesday, April 23.

The MCJ Student Banquet and Showcase gives students the opportunity to submit work from their portfolios for a chance to be recognized as the best students in the school. This year’s banquet, with the theme “Shake, Rattle, and Roll!,” had many talented jackpot winners. Top students in each major were selected by the faculty members in their respective disciplines. Showcase winners were chosen by professionals in the industry, members of the MCJ Board of Advisers, and MCJ Hall of Fame inductees.

“These are always tough choices to make,” said Dr. Chris Campbell, director of the School of Mass Communication and Journalism. “We have many talented students in this school, and this event gives them the chance to be recognized for all their hard work.”

Student award winners included:

*Becky Vu, New Orleans – Best Black & White Photo

*Melanie Boyd, Florence – Best Color Photo

*Kirsty Schmitt, Kiln – Best Creative Advertising

*Emily DeVoe, Mobile – Best Feature News Package, Best News Package, Best Sports News Package, Top Broadcast Journalism Student

*Ardan Thornhill, Hattiesburg – Best Feature Story

*Kelsey Walsh, McComb – Best Graphic Design, Best Non-News TV/Video Production,

*Donald M. Dana, Sr. Advertising Award, Outstanding Academic Achievement Award

*Brandon Warden, Sumrall – Best Live Audio Producer
*April Garon, Brookhaven – Best Multimedia & Digital Journalism, Best Printz Photographer, Best Sports Story, Parnell McKay, Sr. Photojournalism Award

*Nicholas Metts, Meridian – Best Narrative Film

*Wilton Jackson, Jackson – Best News Story

*Zach Ball, Utica – Best Non-Narrative Film

*Yolanda Cruz, Biloxi – Best Opinion/Editorial

*Bradley Presson, Brandon – Best Printz Writer

*Karelia Schimtz, Poplarville – Best Public Relations Campaign, Best Public Relations Writing & Design, Best Research in Public Relations, GodwinGroup Public Relations Award

*Daisy Brame, Hattiesburg – Best Research in Advertising, GodwinGroup Advertising Award

*Lonnie Craig, Hattiesburg – Best Studio Producer

*Kathleen Dearman, Hattiesburg – Best Web Site

*Alan Burford, Meridian – Top Film Student

*Carly Tynes, Petal – Top News Editorial Student

*Jonathan McGowan, Quitman – Top Media Production Student

*Hunter White, Amory – Top Recording Industry Management Student

*Wade Summerford, Smithville – Top Recording Industry Production Student

*Emily Evans, Petal – Top WUSM-FM Student

*Stormi Knippers, Biloxi – Top Master’s Student

*Chen-Wei Chang, Hattiesburg – Top PhD Student

*Bahtiyar Kurambaev, Hattiesburg – Top Graduate Student Teacher

The school also awarded 16 scholarships and endowments, including the following:

*Frank Buckley Scholarship Endowment – Ardan Thornhill

*Staci Cochran-Davis Memorial Scholarship – Kayla Patak

*Michael Fatherree Memorial Scholarship – Mercedes Livingston

*Melanie and Bill Hunsberger Scholarship – Susan Broadridge
*W.E. “Bud” Kirkpatrick Endowment – Khadijah Watson

*Leonard Lowrey Memorial Scholarship – Crystal Garner

*Milly East Martin Memorial Scholarship – Jamie Gominger,

*Tarsha McLaurin Annual Scholarship – Briar Blakley

*Mississippi Media Professionals Scholarship Endowment – Karyn Lewis

*Damian E. Morgan Scholarship in Photography – Kathleen Dearman

*Ralph Pruett Memorial Scholarship – Karie Mooney, Samantha Bass, and Anna Francis

*Marvin & Betty Reuben Scholarship – Wilton Jackson

*Dr. Barbara Rene Shoemake Public Relations Scholarship – Hannah Hill,

*Robert C. Cook Memorial Scholarship – Jessica King

*Arthur J. Kaul Memorial Endowment – Bahtiyar Kurambaev

*Robert Gene Wiggins Endowment – Sheryl Kennedy-Haydel

*2014 Bill Hunsberger Scholarship – Charlotte McLoughlin

For more information about the School of Mass Communication and Journalism and its programs, visit www.usm.edu/mcj.